Super Mario Party Articles RSS Feed | Super Mario Party RSS Feed on en Launch Media Network Super Mario Party Could Break The Series' Mediocre Streak Fri, 22 Jun 2018 10:21:31 -0400 Emily (Pokeflute)

Responses to Nintendo’s E3 Direct were mixed at best. Some were excited about all the attention Super Smash Bros. Ultimate received, and Nintendo did seem bent on catering more to its hardcore and competitive audiences with step-by-step demonstrations of new abilities and costumes for the brawler.

Other fans were disappointed with the lack of new first-party IPs and the absence of highly-desired titles like Animal Crossing. For some of us, the Direct was a mixed bag of ho-hum. 

However, buried within the Direct was a trailer for a game that probably didn’t register on many people’s radars: Super Mario Party.

There's little doubt the Mario Party series has had a rough six years. Sure, the first entries are likely some of the most beloved games of the series and for many fans, they are the touchpoint for some truly fond memories. And the series had been on a roll since Mario Party 2 for the N64 really put it on the map.

But then, something happened. After the Wii and DS released, Mario Party games sold well out of the gate; Mario Party 8 and Mario Party DS sold 8.85 and 9.31 million copies respectively. 

Thing is, though, they just didn’t have the same luster as the earlier entries in the franchise -- and that luster continued to fade with each subsequent release. Here's just how "bad" it's been in sales since 2013: three of the last four Mario Party games have combined sales of roughly 3.9 million units, a number that pales in comparison to the franchise's previous high with Mario Party 8 and Mario Party DS.*

But why? 

The games still followed the same concept, and each iteration introduced lots of new minigames, but they just weren’t as interesting or fun. They didn't receive bad reviews, per se, but they weren’t stellar, either. Mobile Mario Party games, in particular, have struggled: Mario Party: Island Tour has a 57% on Metacritic, and its follow-up Mario Party: Star Rush has a 68%. The Mario Party series desperately needed something to bring back the fun.

Enter Super Mario Party.

The changes start at the name: this is the first console Mario Party game that is not a numbered entry, implying that this game will be a break from what we’ve come to expect from the series.

The game’s Direct trailer starts by showing a group of friends gathering in a coffee shop to play. This skit demonstrates two Switch screens that have been put together to play, meaning that players could have an incentive to play locally with others, which fits perfect with the Switch's multiplayer ethos. 

It was also revealed during a later stream of the game that this is part of the Toad Rec Room mode, which allows players to connect up to three Switches and create a map together. It’s as yet unclear whether this will just be a gimmick like the Gamecube microphone, but it has the chance to facilitate the kind of console/handheld hybrid that Nintendo is really pushing with the Switch -- and it's something that can push this version of Mario Party above those that came before it.

This also has the chance to amend the aforementioned issues with mobile Mario Party games: imagine that instead of having the pared-down experience of a party game on a handheld, you could have the full console experience while still being able to take your Switch to a friend’s house or a party. This specific quirk matters because let's face it, no one wants to play "half" a Mario Party on the go. 

The Switch's Joy-Cons will also facilitate this increased multiplayer fidelity, as it seems as though each player only needs one Joy-Con to participate in a minigame. In other words, if you only have the equipment that came with your Switch, you already have enough for two players. That's a boon for Mario Party players because it means that you can whip up multiplayer sessions right out of the box. And if you group up with another Switch owner, you have enough for the full four-player experience.

This cuts down on the need for extra controllers or consoles, which has hampered the multiplayer aspect of previous Mario Party games.

The potential for this hardware is much higher, as well. Remember how fun the Wiimote was when you were swinging away in Wii Sports? The Joy-Cons provide the same potential with 100% less chance of a remote going through your TV screen. Motion control may always be remembered as a gimmick, but the Wii proved that it’s still a blast with the right people.

Lastly, online multiplayer is something that Mario Party console games have seriously lacked, and a quick search for "Mario Party 10 online" brings up a lot of frustrated players asking why they can't play online with their friends. SMP aims to rectify that by allowing you to play all 80 of the game's minigames online with others. Some may complain that this isn't the same as having the full board mode available to play online, but with the amount of time that Mario Party games take (50-turn games can frequently take hours), the choice makes sense to me.

Making minigames available for network play is the logical next baby step for a company that is frequently very conservative about its online ventures.

Amidst these changes, it seems as though Super Mario Party will keep enough series staples that the game won’t feel completely different, but instead add important, fan-requested wrinkles to the formula. The end of the trailer above shows familiar aspects like gathering stars, moving through board game-like worlds, and competing with your friends in lots of minigames. It will be interesting to see if the game includes any nods to past Mario Party games, such as including worlds from previous games, a la' Mario Kart.

With the game slated to release on October 5, we won’t have to wait too long to see how everything turns out. Some may be disappointed at the prospect of yet another Mario Party, but as for me and a lot of other Nintendo fans out there, I’m excited at the potential for something more.

*Editor's note: Sales figures for the franchise's latest releases, Mario Party: The Top 100 for 3DS were not available as of this writing. 

E3 2018 Nintendo Direct Recap: All the Trailers & Release Dates Tue, 12 Jun 2018 19:58:41 -0400 Ashley Gill

Nintendo going the Direct route for E3 these past few years has been a strange ride, but fans can always count on E3 Directs to have two things: Some anticipated reveals, and a lot of gameplay.

Though today's biggest Nintendo announcements were Super Smash Bros. Ultimate and the Fortnite launch, they did reveal a number of other ambitious projects that can find a home in most Switch libraries.

Out of all of Nintendo's showings today, I am most excited to see Kenichiro Tsukuda's DAEMON X MACHINA in action as it's been a long time since we've seen a mecha game from Armored Core's backbone producer. And the Macross guy doing the mecha designs? Yeah, I'll take that.

DAEMON X MACHINA may be my most hyped game out of this Direct, but chances are you're excited about any of the other great titles shown during the conference.

There's something for everyone in Nintendo Direct E3 2018!

Fire Emblem Three Houses trailer

It's been how long since Fire Emblem has seen a release on a home console? Ah, that's right: It's been 10 years since Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn was released on the Wii.

Fire Emblem Three Houses
looks to be the most graphically/technically impressive game in the series yet. Look for its release in Spring 2019.

Xenoblade Chronicles 2: "Torna -- The Golden Country" trailer

The only expansion in Nintendo's lineup this E3, "Torna -- The Golden Country" is set 500 years before the events in Xenoblade Chronicles 2.


"Torna" won't just be a story expansion; it will also feature tweaks to the battle system, allowing you to play as both Blades and Drivers in combat. This is a sure buy for fans, look for it on the Nintendo Switch on September 21.


We need more mecha games these days. Fact.

from Marvelous! is headed by Armored Core producer Kenichiro Tsukuda, with designs from Macross's Shoji Kawamori, not to mention the other talent involved. It will be making its way to the Nintendo Switch in 2019.

Super Mario Party trailer

The Mario Party games have come in a lot of numbers, but none of them have had "Super" in the name.

Super Mario Party
will be able to make use of two Switch consoles for unique four-player gameplay and minigames. For the first game in the series to be Super, you've got to assume Nintendo is confident in this entry to their long-running party game series. Expect to see this one on the Switch this fall on October 5!

Overcooked 2 trailer

Overcooked has swiftly taken over as one of the go-to co-op games for many, so it makes sense for developer Ghost Town Games to keep the ball rolling with a sequel.

Overcooked 2
will feature more recipes, kitchens, and chefs to keep returning players engaged -- and if that wasn't enough, the game will also come with online multiplayer. There's no such thing as too many cooks.

Along with all of the above, Nintendo showed the following games briefly during today's Direct:

  • Hollow Knight (2018)
  • Fortnite (Today)
  • Killer Queen Black (Winter 2018)
  • SNK Heroines (September 7)
  • Octopath Traveler (July 13)
  • Dragon Ball FighterZ (2018)


And that's it! Everything you need to know about the great games shown at Nintendo's E3 Direct! 

As always, stay tuned to GameSkinny for more news and information on these titles as they develop.